Dr. Avnish Jolly, New Delhi, 8th Feburary, 2009 : On the auspicious occasion of the completion of 85 years in the field of imparting education in Music, Dance, Acting, Yoga, Arts and Crafts, Saraswati Music College (SMC) through its art promotion wing, Saraswati Foundation for Education, Art and Culture (SFEAC) launched its art gallery ART SASTRA in its Safdarjung Enclave premises where the exhibition of 21 eminent artists from across India “WRYKT-VYAKT” (emptiness and manifest) for a week has marked an opening event in the field of fine arts. The exclusive occasion opened with inauguration by the Honorable Shri Chhagan Bhujbal, Dy. Chief Minister, Maharashtra with the release of the catalogue of the exhibition. On this occasion present were who’s who of the art world and nation’s cultural social circuit like Shri Muzaffar Ali and Smt. Meera Ali, Artists Subrata Kundu, Shamshad Hussain, Gopi Gajwani, Manish Pushkale, Harshavardhan, Sudip Roy, Alka Bali, Designers Rahul Jain and Gunjan Arora, Jattin Kochhar, Singer Shibani Kashyap, Naveen Ansal, Raseel Gujral, Shri Rajan Madhu, Mr. Ashok Oswal and many others.
Events like Art camps, Workshops with renowned artist like Mr Subrata Kundu, Monthly Film Screening in the digital art area, Meditation workshops, Digital/Video Art Presentations, Performance arts presentations, Forums etc. are the various events that will be conducted by the SMC World Culture Commune. Other events shall present various musical, dance, poetry festivals, and workshops (with stalwarts like Guru Munna Shuklaji, Photographer Avinash Pasricha, and exposure through performances by International artists as well as indigenous regional talents.
Art Sastra is a 6000 sq. ft. gallery space that SMC has erected to showcase art exhibitions of a variety of artists, such that it reaches out to a wide spectrum of audience that values art. For this, the gallery features a thoughtfully designed infra-structure amidst natural surroundings that not only puts the artwork in its right perspective but also enhances the whole experience for the visitors to the gallery in a glare-free environment.
This is what the chief guest and Dy. Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Honorable Shri Chhagan Bhujbal had to say in regard to this gallery launch, “To develop and foster understanding of the cultural life and art forms by providing society with artistic activities and programs that promote creativity and provide opportunities for excellence through the arts, Art Sastra is truly a boon for the city. I wish Art Sastra all the best for its establishment.”
The gallery consists of various sections for different kind of art objects. Apart from a gallery space for exhibiting Paintings and Photographs (about 2500 sq. feet, 250 running feet wall area), there is a space (about 1000 sq. feet) marked out for displaying other art objects like Sculpture, Pottery, Designer objects, Crafts, Art Installations etc. A separate section (about 600 sq. ft.) has been marked out for Showcasing Digital and Video art and is equipped with Projectors, Kiosks, Sound etc. Another section (700 sq.ft.) which may be used for interactions, holding forums and discussions etc. is also part of the gallery. There is a sculpture garden as well in the building complex amidst natural surroundings. The building also houses a large studio floor (1200 sq ft) which is 16 feet high with a lighting/hanging Truss and can be used for displaying large works of art and art installations.
On this eve, a musician and a world-renowned Astrologer, Mr. B.R. Saini, Secretary, Saraswati Music College Society stated, “We’re at a point, after a few years of conceptualization and gathering some of the best regional artists, it’s finally all come together now. The gallery deals in paintings, sculptures, as well as digital arts from Indian and international scene. Our taste is eclectic and, as dealers, we are interested in any item of exceptional quality, including, both traditional and modernist in style. Art Sastra offers professional services as well as consultation in art investment to an international cosmopolitan audience.”
SMC, with its new building at Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi, provides one such platform for all art forms to burgeon and come together in a collective effort to reach out to the society at large, through education and exposure. Under the SFEAC banner, SMC society has initiated quite a few social activities, for instance, Katharas Film Kulb (KFK)- a film club for independent film makers, Artists Forum, Poetry and Ghalaz Evenings, music meets, theatre performances, dance performances etc. SMC also intends to promote the centre for indigenous and international cultural exchange programs under the name of SMC World Culture Commune, whereby it shall host a number of events, cultural meets, forums and promote new talent by providing a platform for arts and artists to grow.
A Painter, a Film maker, a Poet, a Photographer, and a Musician… A multi-faceted person with interests in various art forms, Mr Vipul Saini, ED, SFEAC & Director of Art Sastra added, “ART SASTRA’s mission is to revitalize our culture by developing a hub that captures energies of art and all its expressions and synchronize them under one roof. Art Sastra – Art Gallery aspires to be a leading specialist in contemporary art featuring a distinctive selection of fine paintings and sculptures by some of Indian and internationally acclaimed contemporary artists. It’s also a place for painters to interact and exchange new ideas.”
Saraswati Music College was established in 1924 by its founder Principal, Late Shri Bansilalji, disciple of the veteran musician, Late Pandit Maniramji of Mewati gharana. The institution is affiliated to Prayag Sangeet Samiti, Allahabad. During the span of three quarters of a century, Saraswati Music College has produced musicians of outstanding repute, such as Padma Vibhushan Pt. Jasraj, music director Shri. O.P. Nayyar, playback singer Mohammad Rafi, actress/singer Sulakshana Pandit, pop singer Anamika and many others.